‘The best team’: Pep Guardiola makes Chelsea claim following Man City’s PL win last night

Pep Guardiola laid down a gauntlet to Chelsea following Manchester City’s 2-0 Premier League win over Brentford yesterday evening.

Speaking after his side extended their lead at the top of the table to 12 points, Guardiola insisted City should not be labelled the best in the world.

That title, according to the Spaniard, still belongs to Thomas Tuchel’s men whilst they are the current European champions.

Chelsea in control of the continent

The Blues could elevate their international status in the sport even further this Saturday.

Chelsea will compete against Palmeiras in the Club World Cup semi-final, having seen off Al Hilal 1-0 last night.

This competition could’ve been City’s to win, had they not lost last season’s Champions League finale.

Photo by Matt McNulty – Manchester City/Manchester City FC via Getty Images

Instead, their focus swiftly moved on to reclaiming the league title, a defence that’s gone pretty remarkably so far.

Pep’s personal opinion

At the beginning of the campaign, it appeared a three-horse race might be on the cards.

Chelsea and Liverpool broke out of the blocks like thoroughbreds, with Tuchel’s men just in front of the pack by December.

However, a mass of dropped points allowed City to cruise back to the summit of the division, winning a dozen games consecutively between November and January, including the 1-0 win at the Etihad against Tuchel’s Blues.

Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images

However, despite their imperious grip on the Premier League trophy, Guardiola maintained the fact his team were not the greatest on the globe.

“We are not the best team in the world. The best team is Chelsea, who won the Champions League, or River Plate, who won in South America,” he said.

“The important thing is we won the game (Brentford) and in three days we go to Norwich and have to win again.

“This thing of who’s the best, I don’t care.”

City chase after Chelsea’s prized posssesion

Whether meant intentionally or not, this declaration has set a challenge for Chelsea.

Clearly, in Guardiola’s eyes, to be football’s dominant force, you must be the Champions League holder.

Photo by Darren Walsh/Chelsea FC via Getty Images

This is an honour that has so far evaded the 51-year-old as City manager, as he continues to search for the missing jewel in his Manchester crown.

Tuchel presently possesses the treasure he most desires, which comes with the identity of being the very best in the business.

Chelsea can prove Guardiola right by winning both the Club World Cup this weekend and defending their European ornament by beating Lille later this month.

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Nathaniel is a football journalist who graduated from the University of Derby. He has worked at Burton Albion as part of their media team for two years. Nathaniel produces regular articles for the club’s official website and match-day programme. He covered the 2018 U20 Women’s World Cup in Brittany and has reported from grounds ranging from non-league up to the Premier League.